I’ve recently taken a humbling in the realisation that there are things that are broken and there is nothing I have found yet to do that is able to fix them. I know now that only God can manage them, and that some things might actually need to wait for heaven to be restored. And sometimes you do hard things and what happens isn’t worthy of an inspirational blog post; it’s about one thousand and sixty-three times worse than the biggest fear that made it hard could foretell. You approach someone to have a conversation, and are knocked off course by a river of contempt that finds you hanging your head in shame and murmuring something about being sorry over and over, then hoping you might die quietly in your sleep, if only you could get to sleep.
We also fear being weak and vulnerable and dependent, yet this is what God desires. God intentionally places us in positions were we must rely only on Him. Our comfort and our provision come from Him. When we see our weakness and inability to fix or change whatever has befallen us God rejoices! He says, “Yes, now you are getting it!”
Also, this one from Jean quoting Nancy Guthrie:
We often hear people talk about the “victorious Christian life.” But isn’t the life of a Christian really more about bending the knee, humbling ourselves, and taking up a cross?
I don’t know what the cross will look like for you. I just know it will require a death to your desires and your dreams to carry it. And it won’t be easy.
But I also know that as you die to yourself. God’s life will take root and grow within you.
And that’s the point. Mrs. Peace reveals how trials may initially bring out the worst in us: anger, bitterness, fear, laziness, self-focus, etc. And isn’t that the truth? Our first reaction to stress or tribulation may expose hidden sin that needs to be purged, as the “worst in us” is revealed. Yet, as Mrs. Peace points out, God uses conflict and trials to expose and show us our sin, prune it off, and grow in us the precious fruit of righteousness (Hebrews 12:11).
One of the tough things about growing in grace is the way that we don’t get to pick the next battlefront nor the pace of that battle in our growth in sanctification.
And finally, this post from Paul Tripp on A Sad and Celebratory Community.